Takeaway from Velocity: CDNs have finally Surpassed Traditional Security Companies in the Innovation Game


Velocity was a big hit for the CDN consumer and analyst. Two key takeaways – first, Silicon Valley is definitely the Disneyland for geeks of all ages, where one gets to exercise the brain muscles far into the imagination. Second, the CDN industry has finally surpassed the pure-play security industry in the innovation game. I had the privilege of talking to 50% + of the pure-play CDN startups in the US, and the experience was mind blowing. Be ready, because in the next six months, CDNs are going to introduce a host of new and exciting features in the realm of security, caching, RAN, protocol optimizations, analytics, and more. Most of stuff is confidential at the moment, but we’ll be see some killer features coming down the pike later this year.

Watch Out FireEye, Palo Alto, F5, Arbor, Zscaler and Cisco

Don’t know how to put lightly, but the “traditional” next gen security companies are behind the innovation curve by 3-5 years. Although many are making billions in sales selling security solutions today, in the form of appliances and VM’s, in a few years the security market will undergo a major transformation, as appliances and VMs give way to the true cloud security solutions offered by CDNs. CDNs might not know it, but they can declare victory in the security space, as the traditional security business model and CDN security model collapse into each other. There are two trends that prove this upcoming occurrence.

First, we can all agree that servers and onsite infrastructure will be going completely to the cloud, whether it’s private or public cloud. Buying servers, setting up an OS, installing software, uploading bug fixes, and so on, is a big waste of time and money. It’s all about utility computing, where buying services on the fly is the new reality. The biggest problem with security appliances and VMs, they don’t scale, and they’re not an on-demand utility. The security VM product is not a cloud product, but a perimeter product that is constrained by the server it sits upon. True cloud security can be enabled globally in seconds, and rules push out in seconds, and the load can be whatever it needs to be without the need to buy more VMs or servers.

CDN Security is the True Cloud Security Product

CDN security is the true cloud security, because it scales in seconds across the globe, and its on-demand like AWS. Sure, the CDN security feature set is small, but it will explode in functionality in the next 18 months. Also, it’s interesting that there are some security companies that offer cloud security without a CDN. The biggest problem with that business model is that cloud security in that instance, acts like a filter. What about acceleration? Security without acceleration isn’t going to work, because performance is just as important as security, and in some cases it’s more important. Conclusion: Unless the “traditional” next gen security appliance vendors build a global CDN PoP infrastructure, they’re toast in a few years, because the real cloud security providers (wink wink “CDNs”) are going to eat their lunch, as security moves from the perimeter to the CDN Edge.

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